Monday, 2 July 2012

RHS Hampton Court 2012 - Lots of innovative ideas and Low Cost gardens to beat the recession

RHS Hampton Court Show Garden - The Italian Garden, designed by Jack Dunckley
RHS Hampton Court opens tomorrow, so let's just say a prayer that the weather is better than today. It started out bright and then turned gloomy, and by the time I left, it was drizzling. But the forecast isn't kind this week, so let's hope visitors to the show get lots of joy from the all the wonderful gardens and exhibits. As always, there's plenty to see and if it rains too hard, you can always go to the Floral Marquee, which is filled with magnificent displays. For a sneak preview, click here.
The World of Gardens section features the Discover Jordan Garden (top left), the Swiss Alpine Garden (top right). the Azorean Garden (bottom left) and the Russian Museum Garden (bottom right). 
This year for the first time, there are four international entries in the World of Gardens section, with Jordan, Russia, Switzerland and the Azores exhibiting. The Jordan garden was designed by Paul Hervey-Brookes from Painswick Rococo garden in Gloucestershire; the Russian Museum Garden by Heather Appleton; the Swiss Alpine Garden was created by Sadie May Stowell and the Azorean Garden owes its look to Stephen Hall. Would-be travellers may well be inspired to travel to these countries after visiting the show! 
Anoushka Feiler designed "Bridge Over Troubled Water" which won Best in Show and a Gold
There are seven show gardens - all very different and filled with interesting features and planting. Bridge Over Troubled Water (above) won the coveted Best in Show award and a Gold medal. Designed by Anoushka Feiler, the garden represents freedom from the symptoms of Overactive Bladder (OAB). Other eye-catching gardens in this category are Jack Dunckley's Silver Gilt winning Italian Job (top), with its glorious colour palette and The Badger Beer Garden, with its wall of beer bottles snaking off into the distance (below) - another Silver Gilt winner.
The Badger Beer Garden - Silver Gilt winner at this year's RHS Hampton Court
With all the constant publicity about recession, recession, recession, the four Low Cost High Impact Gardens are bound to be of interest to visitors to this year's show. They present a range of novel ideas and clever planting, but all on a budget of between £7,000-£13,000. The RHS launched a competition in conjunction with the Association of Professional Landscapers (APL) and the winning designs are here at Hampton Court. Each of the gardens demonstrates how planting would look after two years, to give visitors a realistic view of what they can achieve. Our First Home, Our First Garden (bottom left) won a Gold medal and Best in Class and was built on a budget of just £7,000.
The four Low Cost High Impact Gardens on show at Hampton Court this year: A Compromising Situation (top left), Live Outdoors (top right), Summer in the Garden (bottom left) and Our First Home, Our First Garden (bottom right)
Other categories in the show include the Conceptual Gardens and the Summer Gardens, which I'll be visiting later this week. And of course, there's all the individual exhibitors stands filled with garden goodies that you'll be truly tempted by. Hampton Court is open until 8th July, from 10.00 daily. Tuesday and Wednesday are reserved for RHS members, but the last four days of the show are open to all. For further information and ticket sales contact the RHS online.


  1. Thanks for a great preview Charlotte, unfortunately we are not going until Saturday this year, but looking forward to seeing the coverage here and on TV ahead of our visit.

  2. Thank you for sharing Charlotte, I´m specially happy with the fact that the Azores is part of the world of gardens display this year. The Azores is maybe the most beautiful part of my country, and I recognise the black lava rocks and greenery of tree ferns, strelitzia, vines and hidrangea so typical of that island. I hope it will be a great show, best even without rain..I guess!

  3. Can't say they inspire me - unlike your beautiful header.

  4. I am not much for modern designs, but the Italian Garden is very striking - sleek and yet still full of beautiful flowers. Blue was a great choice to echo the pool. Thanks Charlotte for the views!